Many of us struggle with high blood pressure as we age, and while there are many medications on the market designed to help people control their blood pressure, not everyone wants to rely on pharmaceuticals. That leaves the question, what are some natural ways for older Americans to lower their blood pressure?

Diet

One of the best ways to naturally lower blood pressure is to maintain a healthy diet. That means staying away from highly processed foods, especially the ones that are high in salt and sugar.

Instead, we recommend ditching the junk food in favor of plenty of vegetables and protein. Not only is it a great way to nourish your body with all the building blocks it needs to get and stay strong, it is also a great way to naturally lower your blood pressure.

Exercise

A healthy diet and regular exercise regimen should go hand in hand for building and maintaining a strong body. Doctors recommend an exercise routine that raises your heart rate for at least 15 minutes every day. By engaging in regular cardiovascular workouts that get your blood pumping, your body will be better able to maintain a steady heart rate and blood pressure when you are not exercising.

Do Not Smoke

Smokers are much more likely to have high blood pressure than non-smokers, so if you smoke, one of the best things you can do for yourself is to quit. Not only will it help lower your blood pressure, but it will also increase your lung capacity, which in turn will increase your stamina and your energy levels. Quitting is hard, but it is worth it.

Maintain Healthy Sleep Habits

Sleep is critical for all areas of our health, both mental and physical. The average person needs about eight hours of sleep a night to be healthy and live their best life, but keep in mind that that is the average. Some people are fine on six hours of sleep a night while others need nine hours. Know what works best for you and do whatever you need to do to get that sleep.

That means going to bed at the same time every night and trying to get up at the same time every morning. Limit distractions before bedtime, especially screen time and anything with blue light. You can download an app onto your phone or computer that dims the blue light on your screen when the sun goes down. You can also set your phone to automatically darken the screen and block notifications from your bedtime until your normal wake-up time.

If you sleep best with music or white noise, you can get a radio or device that plays whatever noise will help put you to sleep. You can even use your phone to listen to soothing music, rain, or anything else you like to listen to as you fall asleep.

Keep in mind, physical exercise during the day can also make it easier to fall asleep at night, so you can kill two birds with one stone by exercising regularly.

Meditation

Meditation is excellent for lowering blood pressure, both in the moment, and in the long term. Any time you feel yourself getting stressed, your heart rate and blood pressure both go up, and by taking a few deep breaths and meditating, even just for a few minutes, you can bring down your heart rate and blood pressure.

People who meditate on a regular basis report feeling less stress overall, as well as lower blood pressure. If you have chronic high blood pressure, meditating once or twice will not be enough to get the results you need. You should instead try to meditate on a regular basis for at least a week or two before determining whether you notice a difference in your blood pressure or stress levels.

At Stillwater Senior Living, our goal is always to help keep our residents healthy in whatever way works best for them. If they need help remembering to take their medication, we are happy to help with that. If they would prefer to stay healthy without medications, we can help with that, too. Reach out now to ask how we can help you or your loved one live their best life in assisted living.